Nine runners line-up for Ludlow’s Injured Jockeys Fund Handicap Chase, a race that has been won by the second favourite in all of the last three renewals. Read on for our experts views and betting tip.
In Summary: A race likely to be run at a sound clip with Letbeso and Basford Ben who both like to get on with things. That could put demands on the stamina of a few including the favourite Adam Du Breteau who recorded a career best when stepped down in trip last time. The pace could play into the hands of STILL BELIEVING who represents last year’s winning trainer, she would have no problems with any softening of the ground.
1 Letbeso – The top weight has finished last on both of his last starts, but in August the eight-year-old rewarded punters when winning at Southwell. Peter Bowen’s chance has winning experience on quick ground and has landed three wins whilst chasing in his career, but after two poor efforts he is difficult to fancy.
2 Adam Du Breteau – Connections will be hoping to follow up a recent impressive win at Huntingdon. Jonjo O’Neill’s six-year- old ran out an eight-length winner at the Cambridgeshire course, and bids to follow it up as he steps up in class. He won over 3 miles in a point but it was a career best last time when stepped down in trip on good to firm ground.
3 By the Boardwalk – Made his last start only nine days ago. Kim Bailey’s nine-year-old finished fourth at Exeter that day. He did however pick up the winner’s cheque at Market Rasen on his penultimate start. He’s won twice on good ground, and once over three miles; but he was a long way off last time out and will have to improve from that run.
4 Big Casino – The 10yo is searching for back-to-back wins, following his successful trip to Stratford in October. Nigel Twiston-Davies’ gelding improved from a second at Uttoxeter to win his first race of 2016, he’s won at this track before but his stamina is the question mark; he is yet to win over three miles.
5 Miss Serious – The six-year-old finished a close second two starts ago, before suffering two falls at Exeter and Wincanton last month. She’s at her best over more than three miles, and if the going remains good at the Shropshire track, that would benefit her. The form of her last race has worked out well, with Gentleman Jon stepping up to win a listed race in convincing style. If she can clear her fences and run her race, she should have a good chance.
6 Moss On The Hill – Returning after a lengthy break for trainer Tom George, the eight-year-old ran some good races in the summer. The most notable of which when he won a competitive handicap hurdle race at Market Rasen. He has yet to win over fences, and to come back from a break may be a tough ask.
7 On the Bridge – Jeremy Scott’s second entry has failed to fire in any of his last six starts. He picked up a duo of victories on good ground last season over a similar trip, and runs some of his best races at this time of year. He will need to return to form, but if he does he has to have an each-way chance.
8 Still Believing – Evan Williams saddled King Massini who won the race last year, this year represented by this daughter of Blueprint. She posted two decent efforts in similar handicaps last month, finished a runner-up at Worcester before running third at Hereford a fortnight later. She won over this C&D in January on heavy so rain would suit, but is equally adaptable on a sounder surface.
9 Basford Ben – After a recent run at Carlisle, Basford Ben may be in the right shape to pick up another win over three miles. Jennie Candlish’s eight-year-old has picked up two wins over today’s trip, going and class. The bottom-weight was a lengthy third when last seen last month but that was following a 168 day absence and is excused. Sean Quinlan’s mount certainly ticks a lot of boxes, and could take the prize if he returns back to his best.